Halep admits 'little bit negative' in Williams defeat

Melbourne (AFP) –


World number two Simona Halep said she needs to work on her on-court attitude after crashing out of the Australian Open to Serena Williams Tuesday.

The Romanian second seed came up against a formidable and focused Williams on Rod Laver and was unable to match her in the baseline rallies, crashing out in the quarter-finals 6-3, 6-3.

She felt she was "not that far" away, but admitted the veteran American was "stronger in the important moments".

"She was very powerful at the return. So, yeah, those long rallies were very important. But I'm not that disappointed with myself," said the two-time Grand Slam winner.

"My attitude maybe a little bit negative the whole tournament, but I'm going to work on this, and I will come back stronger with that."

Throughout the opening Grand Slam of the year the usually ice-cool Halep has let her frustrations bubble to the surface, admitting she had been "complaining a little bit too much".

"But tennis-way, I think I did a good job," said the ultra-consistent 29-year-old, who is currently in her 349th consecutive week inside the top 10.

"I worked hard in the off-season and here I could see how much I improved in some things. So I'm positive on that, on tennis, and I have confidence.

"But I still have to work to get back in the good shape mentally."

Halep, who now plans to head home before competing next in Doha then Dubai, paid tribute to Williams, who moved a step closer to an long elusive 24th Grand Slam title.

"She played really well, and definitely she deserved to win tonight," he said.

"I felt like she's moving really well... she's running more and she's next to the ball better."